December 27, 2012 § 14 Comments
Well, not everything was made on Christmas, but the whole week saw me baking for myself and others.
The common thread? Cocoa. Lots of it.
A last-minute chocolate and strawberry pudding- inspired by David Lebovitz’s clafoutis recipe.
Eggless chocolate cupcakes from Anushruti’s blog- this one is a winner!
I hope all of you are enjoying the holidays!
December 11, 2012 § 13 Comments
So much for vowing to post more in November. But then, I do have an excuse: I was travelling! To the Middle East and back. I spent time with my family, shopped for all kinds of stuff for my kitchen, and, of course, fed myself happily. I attended my cousin’s wedding after that, and had family come and visit me in Mumbai as well.
I cannot believe the year went by so fast. (How painfully clichéd is that?) But indeed, it has. The festive season, for me, began with Diwali, and it’s all one big happy season till the new year. The Diwali lights have blurred into Christmas lights; and my neighbours are hanging stars on their windows and balconies. And since Christmas is coming around, it’s time to break out the cookie cutters, cake tins and muffin moulds and bake with sugar, spice and all things nice!
- The pictures are rather blah.
- I was being a lazy lardy vacationing lump.
- I was compensating for above lazy lardiness by attempting regular gym schedules; which made me tired; which gave me an excuse to begin a post and abandon it.
- You can guess by now what my New Year’s resolutions are going to be.
I thought this would fit into my theme this month of cooking with sugar and spice, so here it is. I first came across the recipe on Purple Foodie, and chanced upon many more recipes for upside down pear cakes. But since I wanted my pears neither upside down nor up top but nestled in the middle, I borrowed from two sources, married two methods and came out with a decent enough slice of cake.
- 200 grams butter
- 1 1/4 cup flour
- 1/2 cup castor sugar
- 1/2 cup Demerara sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 2 tablespoons ground ginger powder
- 1/2 cup pears, peeled, cored, diced/grated
- 3 eggs
- A little extra castor sugar and butter for sprinkling and dabbing on top
- Preheat the oven to 180C
- Grease a cake tin (I used one that is 9 inches round) and set aside.
- In a bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, ground ginger and diced or grated pears
- In a saucepan, melt the butter. Once it is melted, pull off heat and allow to cool.
- In another bowl, beat both the sugars with the eggs, adding the eggs in one at a time.
- To the egg-sugar mixture, fold in the dry ingredients followed by the melted butter and combine well.
- Spoon this mixture into the prepared cake tin and sprinkle some more castor sugar on top. Dot some softened butter as well.
- Bake for 35-40 minutes at 180C or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
This cake does not look very phancy; in fact it is quite the humble plain Jane…however, it is nice for tea time. The fact that it isn’t clawingly sweet and that hit of ginger makes it a nice accompaniment to a cup of tea. Or coffee. Or apple cider. I’m not sure how great it’d be with a cup of cocoa though…hmmm.
I will post pictures of my travels soonly. And this time when I say I want to post more this month, I do mean it.
November 13, 2012 § 6 Comments
Perhaps this is not the most traditional of Diwali sweets, but hey- you know how much I love anything chocolate. I took my fail-safe brownie recipe, added a tweak and some coffee, and poured everything into cupcake moulds.
So you get something that’s a little more festive than brownie squares.
BROWNIE CUPCAKES (Tweaked with help from Nigella.)
- 4 eggs
- 10 tablespoons butter
- 1 3/4 cups castor sugar
- 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 150 grams milk chocolate cut into pieces
- 10 ml boiling water
- 1 1/2 teaspoons instant coffee powder.
- Preheat oven to 180C
- Line a cupcake tin with cupcake liners
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder and baking soda and keep aside.
- In a small bowl, combine the coffee powder and boiling water till coffee dissolves; then add the chocolate so that it just melts and you get a thick chocolatey sauce. Add a little more water if you need to.
- In a saucepan with high sides, melt the butter over gentle heat. Once the butter is melted, add in the sugar and stir with a wooden spoon until well incorporated.
- Next, add in all the dry ingredients and stir until well combined. You will get a soft crumbly chocolate mixture; and it may not be completely well blended at this stage, but you need to pull it off the heat. Allow mixture to cool a little.
- Whisk the eggs and vanilla extract into the saucepan, followed by the coffee-chocolate liquid.
- Pour the batter into the cupcake tin and bake at 180C for 30-40 mins. Here again, your cupcakes should look dry and set on top but still be a little moist and soft within.
These are quick to make and you certainly won’t disappoint anyone!
Happy Diwali everyone!
As you can see, I decided to stop being such a Nigella hater and bought her book. And I stacked my cupcake on top of hers. (Now that sounds like something she would say on air, right? Stacking her cupcakes.)